The collector car season is well on its way – and you know what that means! It’s time to spruce up your trusty ride and start cleaning up your collector car’s exterior and interior to prepare for its debut on the road. Not just any scrubbing will do, however. You have to take the right approach to avoid marring the seats, dash, and other materials. So, use these tips to make the inside sparkle:

Keep All the Right Tools on Hand

Before you get started, take the time to grab all the tools you will need to clean your classic car’s interior. The exact items you will need depends on the materials used for the seats and other surfaces.

For most collector car’s interior spaces, you will need:

  • Small shop vac with all the attachments
  • Multi-surface interior cleaner
  • Vinyl or leather protectant spray
  • Foam upholstery cleaner
  • Glass cleaner
  • Compressed air
  • Scrub brush
  • Microfiber cloths
  • Cotton swabs

Don’t forget a face mask and gloves to protect yourself from the dust and cleaner fumes swirling through the air as you work.

Vacuum All the Surfaces Inside the Car

Although vacuuming is a given for the carpeted floors, that is not the only surface that requires this step. If you just start scrubbing away at the seats or rear deck, the debris will act like sandpaper and damage the underlying surfaces. So, before you do anything else, make sure to vacuum all the interior surfaces, not just the carpet. Focus on around the seams and crevices to get the interior as clean as possible.

Scrub the Carpet Clean

Once the carpet is vacuumed, it is time to scrub it clean. Apply the foam upholstery cleaner to the carpet as directed and let it sit for a few minutes. Then, work from front to back scrubbing gently with the brush to work the debris loose. After that, vacuum once again to remove the rest of the cleaner and make your carpets look and smell like new. If you have cloth seats, door panels, and rear deck, you will want to clean them using the upholstery cleaner as well.

Clean the Glass Until It Shines

After you are done with the carpets, turn your attention to the windows. Apply glass cleaner directly to a clean microfiber cloth to keep it from dripping down into the door panel. Using the damp rag, wipe down the windows using a circular motion and gentle pressure, repeating the process until all fingerprints and other marks are long gone. Before putting away the glass cleaner, wipe down the rear-view mirror and vanity mirrors in the visors in the same manner.

Clean the Front and Back of the Seats

Unless you have cloth seats, you will need to determine whether you are working with vinyl or leather materials. When you use a high-quality cleaning product made for the right material, it not only cleans but protects as well. So, once you figure that out, work in small sections, spraying the seats down with either vinyl or leather cleaner. Then, use a microfiber cloth to thoroughly clean and dry the surface before moving onto the next section.

Wipe Down the Dashboard and Other Hard Surfaces

Using a clean, dry microfiber cloth, sweep the dust off the dashboard, center console, and all other hard surfaces. If you notice any marks that do not wipe away, spray multi-surface interior cleaner on a cloth and gently scrub the area. Use the cotton swabs to clean the vents and other small areas, such as around the turn signal stalks. You can spray some cleaner on the cotton swabs for stubborn dirt and stains. If you can see dust but cannot reach it, spray the area with a bit of compressed air to work it loose.

Once you finish these tasks, take a step back and admire your hard work. Whether you plan on taking your collector car to car shows and cruise nights in your area, or simply take it out for a spin, we can guarantee that everyone will love to see your car!

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